Influencer marketing is changing the way we perceive brands and purchase products online. Long gone are the days when advertisements involving movie stars would sell products. Nowadays, consumers find social media influencers to be more relatable and reliable and are more likely to buy products suggested by them. If you are a brand that has quality products and services to offer to your audience, influencer marketing is a great idea to gain visibility on Instagram.

There’s a reason why trust comes up so frequently when discussing influencer marketing. People have discovered that advertising exaggerates and that celebrities are paid to promote products they do not necessarily recommend personally. According to IPSOS, just 4% of Americans believe the marketing industry is genuinely transparent. So, how can social media marketing continue to have such an enormous influence on consumer purchasing behavior?

To understand how Instagram and other social media influencers affect consumer buying behavior, we need to look at the types of existing influencers. Suppose you are a brand looking forward to collaborating with Instagram influencers. In that case, it’s crucial to understand various kinds of Influencers, how each type is different from the other and which type best suits your brand.

The different types of Instagram Influencers are: 

  1. Mega-Influencers 
  2. Macro-Influencers
  3. Mid-Tier Influencers
  4. Micro-Influencers 
  5. Nano-Influencers

Mega Influencers ( more than a million followers)

I know what you are thinking. Celebrities, right? Influencers with a million followers or more indeed enjoy a certain celebrity status. They are highly visible on Instagram, and they take influencer marketing to its highest levels. They have the opportunity to collaborate with premium brands, and they make a lot of money on a single post. 

While influencer marketing is a highly competitive domain, you can find your way to becoming a ‘Mega Influencer’ with consistency and quality. However, there is a downside to choosing a Mega Influencer to endorse your brand. In a study conducted by social media analysts, they observed that in apps like Instagram overall engagement of an influencer decreases as their followers count increases. An Instagram influencer with more than 10 million followers showed an engagement rate as low as 1.6%. If you are a premium brand looking forward to going global, Mega Influencers are a perfect fit.

Examples: The Kardashians, Cristiano Ronaldo, Dwayne Johnson ‘The Rock,’ Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, and Beyonce are a few examples of influencers with more than a million followers and earning millions of dollars in revenue from social media alone.

Macro-Influencers (between 500k to a million followers)

Macro Influencers are internet celebrities, content creators, and local celebrities who gained a following through vlogging, blogging, and other forms of content. These influencers are masters of their niche, and their engagement with their followers is much higher. These influencers produce content regularly with their expert knowledge, and hence their followers increase consistently. 

If you are a brand that wants to gain visibility by targeting a niche-specific audience, then these influencers are your best bet. These influencers do charge high since many brands want to collaborate with them. Another reason why you should choose Macro Influencers is that they have been in the ‘influencer marketing’ game for a while, and they know the best ways to create engagement and gain a good audience for your brand.

Examples: Kanan Gill, Tanmay Bhat, Saloni Chopra, and Srishti Dixit are some of the macro-influencers with who brands collaborate due to their niche-specific audience.

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Micro-Influencers (between 100k to 500k followers)

Micro-influencers may have a significantly smaller following than mega-influencers, and macro-influencers, upcoming brands, start-ups, and big brands often see this group of content-creators as far more valuable in engagement and trust. Such a high level of engagement is because micro-influencers have a closer relationship with their followers and are more niche-focused. 

Audiences perceive such influencers to be more relatable and hence reliable.  A product or a service recommended by a micro-influencer is more likely to be purchased by at least 80% of their followers. They have a persistent, relevant, and engaged following. The interaction rates of micro-influencers are 60% higher than those of Mega-Influencers, making them more useful for brands who are looking to gain more visibility in a short amount of time.

Examples: Tanish Sharma (Theforkeddiaries), Aishwarya Kaushal, and Neha Mathur (Whiskaffair) are Micro-Influencers who have a cult-like following on social media and often collaborate with brands.

Nano Influencers (less than 10k followers)

Nano influencers are social media influencers who are well-known in their local community. Their reach is modest, but their work substantially impacts a tiny, close-knit community. Local businesses such as restaurants, hotels, and clinics utilize nano influencers because they wish to target audiences in a particular area, resulting in high engagement and conversions. They maintain a close relationship with their target audience, which may be advantageous for the brand. Politicians contesting in a locality also collaborate with Nano-Influencers. 

Friends or family members whose recommendations are trusted by those in their circle are examples of nano influencers. They are individuals who share knowledge that people can relate to and experiences with which their followers can engage and identify. They are suitable for start-ups with limited marketing resources that wish to focus on a particular product or service while experimenting with various influencer marketing strategies. However, because they lack expertise working with established brands, nano influencers are less attractive to brands looking for significant reach and conversions.

Examples: Sankeetha Dev (@glow_in_vogue), Anurag Sinha (@iamAnuragSinha), and Moderators (@moderas_in) are influencers who create content for a smaller community.

Conclusion

While many influencers exist, choosing the right kind of influencer for your brand comes down to understanding your brand’s long-term and short-term objectives. Another helpful tip while analyzing a particular influencer is to know the brands they are currently working with. If the brands have similar goals and a niche like yours, that specific influencer might be a good fit. Rather than sticking to an already established strategy, take the risk to experiment with various influencers until you find a suitable one.